DALLAS – Corey Brewer earned himself some valuable time in the Dallas Mavericks’ rotation with his rock ‘em, sock ‘em performance Friday night against the Los Angeles Clippers.
The big question is, whose minutes will Brewer take moving forward?
Brewer completely filled up the stat sheet during the 107-96 win over the Clippers as he produced a season-high 20 points, six rebounds, four assists and four steals. He provided a spark for a Mavs’ squad that ahs looked listless lately coming into the game against the Clips.
This comes on the heels of Brewer scoring 13 points and collecting three steals in only 20 minutes during this past Wednesday's game against Denver.
What’s more, Brewer has been such a valuable spark that he is turning heads and making the Mavs coaches think they just may have to give him one of those 12 valuable playoff roster spots.
“He’s making a strong case for being active,’’ coach Rick Carlisle said. “His game tonight is going to earn him some more minutes and I think we’ve just got to keep looking at it.’’
Normally a small forward, Brewer started Friday at shooting guard. But with point guard Jason Kidd _ he sat out his second straight game – soon returning to the lineup, Carlisle is going to have to improvise in order to find minutes for Brewer.
That’s because when Kidd returns, Rodrigue Beaubois will slide back to his shooting guard spot. Then there’s Jason Terry and JJ Berea – the normal first two guards off the bench.
And the small forward spots are also crowded with Shawn Marion, Peja Stojakovic and DeShawn Stevenson. Somebody is going to be the odd-man out, especially if Brewer keeps playing like he did against the Clippers.
“There’s going to be opportunities to put him out there situational or in the rotation, and we’ll see what he does there,’’ Carlisle said. “But it’s hard to argue against what he’s doing right now.’’
The Clippers certainly didn’t argue about Brewer’s contributions.
“He brought energy and hustle,’’ said Clips forward Blake Griffin. “A couple of times he hit shots.
“He really had a solid game.’’
Brewer has been staying after practice working with Carlisle on his shooting. He saw some results against the Clips as he converted 8-of-16 shots against the Clippers in a solid 30-minute performance.
“I’ve stayed after practice with coach Carlisle and we have worked on shooting,’’ Brewer said. “It’s been a lot of hard work, but it’s paying off.’’
Carlisle said Brewer can play shooting guard with success, although he’s a natural small forward.
“His more natural position at this time is (small forward) because of the length and the way his game is constructed, but he causes problems at (shooting guard) with his activity, his running ability. He’s an agitator out there – he makes things happen, he makes good things happen for us.’’
-- Dwain Price
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